10 Cloverfield Lane

Contrary to the implications of its name, this is but a distant relative to JJ Abrams’ Cloverfield about a rampaging creature on the loose. After her near fatal car accident, a young woman named Michelle, played by the always engaging Mary Elizabeth Winstead, awakens to find herself shackled to a wall, her wounds dressed while being cared for by two men: a conspiracy theorist and his handyman. Howard (John Goodman) only asks for loyalty in return for her sharing his bomb shelter and food but all Michelle can think about is escaping from this creepy survivalist who may have been responsible for numerous missing persons. Howard’s overwrought obsessive compulsion drives a wedge between them in what is a political allegory about facing the choice between authoritarian submission or taking your chances above ground from a chemical attack. If you prefer “Independence Day Blasting Shoot ‘Em Ups,” be aware this is psychological sci-fi which requires its audience to “think”!